The FAQ, i.e. the list of frequently asked questions, is a dedicated subpage that presents a collection of the most popular issues raised by customers of a given company or service. The practice of publishing a FAQ on websites is almost as old as the Internet itself – the first electronic mailing lists of this type appeared before the WWW protocol was developed. Today, the FAQ is found on millions of websites of active online stores or service companies around the world, and we will now answer the question of why and how to create an FAQ?
Why is it worth putting an FAQ on the website?
– Provides the customer with immediate
help – the user can quickly find an answer to his question, which shortens the
shopping path. You can read more about customer path mapping in e-commerce in
the article on our website.
– It saves time – both for you and the client. Regardless of whether the questions are answered exclusively by you or the company is handled by an extensive customer service and technical support department, each interaction takes time and involves an employee. The FAQ allows you to skip direct contact for the most common questions, but do not leave them unanswered.
– It proves that you care about consumers – the FAQ in a clear, friendly form presents various procedures on the company-client line. Transparent presentation of opportunities in future cooperation (whatever form it may take) is a great value for the user, as well as a great way to show your experience, customer-friendly approach and build trust.
– It has a positive effect on SEO – the FAQ is a full-fledged subpage that, like others, affects the positioning of the entire website. This creates a great potential for improving SEO, including thanks to internal linking. In addition, it is a subpage with a lot of content, willingly “clicked”, with opportunities for systematic expansion of the content – web robots like it!
– Allows Google Featured Snippets to appear – a properly constructed question-answer scheme may be considered by Google as valuable enough to appear as a highlighted fragment above the search results.
– Provides data – thanks to analytical modules, you can check which issues (and how) are most often checked by users, which allows you to refine procedures and implement the necessary changes. The FAQ is a great source of knowledge about customer needs.
In many places – from large online stores to small service business sites – the FAQ, despite being published by poor execution, is on the verge of uselessness. A poorly made list of frequently asked questions is not only of little value to the user, but can even irritate him and lead him to redirect his internet steps elsewhere.
FAQ – selection of questions
The first step, of course, will be to refer to your and customer service experience. You perfectly know the needs of customers and the topics that are most often discussed in communication. It is also worth taking a look at the websites of the closest competitors operating in the same industry – many issues will probably be similar. In the case of online stores, must-have is, for example, a clear presentation of payment mechanisms, returns policy or warranty procedures.
FAQ – structure
A typical FAQ list has a rolling question-answer structure. It is very important to properly group the questions into specific categories – asking about the features of a product or a selected service package is a slightly different matter than a loyalty program, login data or the account deletion process. Categorizing topics greatly facilitates navigation and accelerates the user reaching the issue of interest.
The questions should be presented in first-person form – just as the client would type them. You should also use friendly language and avoid industry jargon.
The answers in the FAQ are usually short and as specific as possible – the user came to the page in order to obtain a concise, factual answer. This is no place for grass-talk. If the explanation requires more than a few paragraphs of text to be accurate, it is probably worth considering creating a separate subpage, and providing basic information in the FAQ, followed by a link to a more comprehensive article. If you decide to publish an extensive answer in the FAQ, be sure to take care of the appropriate structure of the text – take care of the right headings, legible text and division into paragraphs.
It is worth paying attention to the right choice of keywords – the question must be easy to find. An appropriate structure based on structured data also means that in the search results the elements of a given FAQ will be presented in an extended form, the so-called rich snippets.
At the end of the list, it is worth placing a contact form or at least a link to it in case the user does not find an answer to his question or needs clarification of some issues with the consultant.
Video and FAQ
Sometimes short films appear as part of the FAQ, most often simple animations (so-called explaining). This may be a good solution in some situations (e.g. when an issue requires specific steps that are easier to present graphically than text), but it has many disadvantages. First of all, a large part of people “scans” the text with their eyes faster, ergo assimilates the necessary information more efficiently than it would be in the case of even a few dozen seconds long film. The video itself will not affect SEO as much as the traditional text form, and it will also slightly extend the loading time of the subpage.
The answer in the form of a video makes sense especially in the case of typical technical support issues, e.g. assembly instructions for a given product or presentation of its specific function. Of course, you can always use a mixed form – text and video, which will complement each other.
FAQ – update
First of all, the FAQ cannot be treated as a complete whole. It is an important element of the website and should be a constantly evolving organism – in most companies, new questions arise every day, some of which perhaps should be on your website.